Dec 20, 2012, 12:07 PM
Post #1 of 14
Skydiver impacts Turkey Vulture.
Has this every happened that you know of? I've hit one of these on a motorcycle and it could have been worse. Just wondering about bird strikes. I've not seen too many birds around 4000 AGL but who knows what might be lurking.
quade (D 22635)
Dec 20, 2012, 12:22 PM
Post #2 of 14
It would be messy that's for sure. Big birds but i have never seen them very high. There are some electrical towers on the river near me that my friends and I like to base jump from. Two of them are notorious for Turkey Vultures and one the two easily had 100+ on it one night we were climbing. They dont scare easily and one decided to attack my friends stash bag...while he was wearing it.
Really dont think a skydiver impact would be likely though...never seen them that high. I have however seen hawks on several occasions around 3k ft, both in freefall and under canopy. We had a skydiver vs hawk collision at breakoff last year and if left a perfect wing imprint on my friends back. (Backtrack from VFS formation.)
I had one close encounter with a turkey vulture during deployment. This was back in the days where pitching the pc at 2000 ft was considered "normal".
It wasn't much more than 100 feet away when I got in the saddle about 50 feet higher. I even tried to dive my canopy to it but it veered off. It wasn't until later that I learned they can spew vomit when threatened. I would have hated getting vulture vomit on me...
Ugh, I've seen those things on the ground and remember thinking it's a wonder they can fly at all. I've never seen a bird at more than a few hundred feet, though. There's really not much reason for them to go up there -- it'd just be that much harder to see food.
Back on Oahu, though, there were some birds that used to do a migration every morning on the west side of the island. I'm not sure what they were, but they came from the mountain, must have been flying at several thousand feet and were HUGE. Those might be a problem if you happen to be doing a dawn skydive there. Though it might be kind of neat to try to flock with them for a while in a wingsuit...